March 23, 2014, Edmonton, AB (ISN) – With the Edmonton Oil Kings’ top players pushed into a shutdown role, the team’s scoring depth led them to victory Sunday at Rexall Place.
Third liners Riley Kieser and Luke Bertolucci and defenceman Dysin Mayo all scored in the third period as the Oil Kings came from behind for a 3-1 win over the Prince Albert Raiders in Game 2 of their best-of-seven first round match-up to take a 2-0 series lead.
“We played solid defensively, and that gave us opportunities offensively,” Kieser said. “My linemates played great … and Pollock made a great play. I was lucky to be on the end of it.”
Oil Kings leading goal scorer Curtis Lazar and top defenceman Griffin Reinhart have been tasked with shutting down Prince Albert’s Leon Draisaitl, a top 2014 NHL draft prospect who racked up 105 points this season, leaving a scoring void that the other lines need to fill, Oil Kings head coach Derek Laxdal explained.
“We’ve got Curtis checking Draisaitl, so it takes him out a little bit offensively,” he said. “The other guys have got to step up, and that’s where guys like Dysin Mayo and Luke Bertolucci can step up.”
In Game 1 Saturday it was rookie Tyler Robertson with the game-winning goal and two points, while in Game 2 on Sunday Kieser had two points, including his first power play goal of the season, and Luke Bertolucci added the insurance marker while looking dangerous all night.
“I thought Riley Kieser’s line with Mads Eller and Luke Bertolucci created a lot of offence tonight, and they finally got one through in the third period,” Laxdal said.
“I thought our third line was great tonight … . In the playoffs, you’ve got to have heroes, and Mayo and Bertolucci were the heroes tonight.”
Tristan Jarry made 31 saves for the victory, allowing just the one goal to Prince Albert’s Dakota Conroy. Cole Cheveldave stopped 29 pucks for the Raiders.
“Tristan Jarry’s Tristan Jarry,” Laxdal said. “He’s got great composure and doesn’t get rattled. That’s going to be big for us moving forward.”
The Oil Kings will now head to Prince Albert for Game 3 on Tuesday and Game 4 on Wednesday. The game will be broadcast live on TSN 1260 and streamed on the internet through WHL Live.